Why We Avoid Estate Planning
Why We Avoid Estate Planning
There are many reasons intelligent, educated people avoid estate planning. According to a new Caring.com survey, only 42 percent of U.S. adults currently have estate planning documents such as a will or living trust. For those with children under the age of 18, the figure is even lower, with just 36 percent having an end-of-life plan in place.1 Why have you been avoiding putting a plan into place? Have you thought a plan is too expensive, not necessary for your situation, or you don’t where to start? Do you have a complicated family situation you thought would get better before you want to make a plan?? It is scary to think about you and your spouse passing away, not being alive for upcoming family milestones. It is an emotional experience that causes people to procrastinate which could be a problem for your loved ones. Without a plan your assets will be left to the court, which is a difficult process to navigate. Working with qualified professionals can help create a plan while you are still alive.
Talking about things you’re not familiar with, like all these legal terms and all the stuff, the fees, right? Everybody’s afraid of that. In fact, there is a word for the fear of dealing with lawyers. Yep, that’s right, Dikigorosophobia. Lawyers are there to help you. People generally get scared that a lawyer might outsmart them, which will result in them getting dragged into spending money they don’t want to spend, and so on.
Handling the unknown
Some people avoid estate planning because they fear dealing with things they do not understand or can’t comprehend. Let’s compare it to air conditioning. If your air conditioner quits working, you are going to call someone to fix it. Is there a chance you are uninformed and unsophisticated about HVAC? Most likely, but we love and need our air conditioners, especially on a hot summer day, meaning you are probably willing to pay anyone to get it back on. Think of a lawyer for your Estate Plan like someone who would fix your air conditioner, and call them to get it done.
Dikigorosophobia, is the fear of working with a lawyer. Lawyers are there to help you and protect your interests. People generally get scared that a lawyer might outsmart them, which will result in them getting dragged into spending money they don’t want to spend, and so on.
Facing your own mortality
Few people like to talk about the “D” word: death. There are a million other things we would all rather talk about, but the bottom line is we’re not going to live forever. The first hurdle to overcome in this process is to come to terms with your own mortality. Then plan for what you would like to happen. Putting your plan in writing will alleviate stress for your loved ones.
Giving up control
Another reason we avoid estate planning might be because we do not want to relinquish control of our assets. Nobody likes to give up control, especially when it comes to their life and belongings. A different way to think of it is that you are actually taking control. By creating your Estate Plan, YOU get to decide what happens to your things, where your money goes, and the way it happens. Besides the control over your belongings and money, if you start planning early you could potentially help minimize a large amount of taxes and utilize techniques which permit transfers while managing your funds.
Probate is your plan
If you don’t prepare an estate plan the government does one for you. It’s called the probate court. Probate is defined as a process where a court reviews a will to make sure that it is authentic, and allows others to make legal challenges to the
Children planning for their parents
If your parents need a push putting a plan together, it may be in your benefit to help them. Avoiding an estate plan can slow down the process of inheritance being received, it can take away from the value of an inheritance if not efficiently transferred and may cause stress and confusion for your loved ones when they should be rejoicing and reminiscing your life and memories. The people who are generally affected by not having an estate plan are the loved ones.
If you would like more information please rsvp for our free, no obligation meeting July 17th at 6pm by calling 417-882-1800.
As always, if you have any financial questions or would like more information on this topic, give our office a call anytime and make sure to tune into Bruce’s show next week.
The information contained in this material is believed to be reliable, but accuracy and completeness cannot be guaranteed; it is not intended to be used as the sole basis for financial decisions.
We are not permitted to offer, and no statement contained herein shall constitute, tax or legal advice. Individuals are encouraged to consult with a qualified professional before making any decisions about their personal situation. Our firm is not affiliated with the U. S. Government or any governmental agency. Investment advisory services offered only by duly registered individuals through